3d Max does export Opacity value of an material to Fbx, which in Xna (when importet/processed) can be easily found in BasicEffect of a mesh instance Alpha property (and used in draw method).

My question is:

  1. Can opacity values on animated mesh be exported (specific opacity states/values over time/keyframes) ??

From what I gathered it seems that only Opacity value of the First frame of animated mesh is exported (and found in BasicEffect of mesh). So if in Max there are keyframes with different opacity values and Max animation preview clearly show these transparency transitions when moving scroll, then do not get exported to Fbx.

Are there knows techniques/hacks to inject opacity from animated meshed (values over time/keyframes) to Fbx?


1 Answer 1


So, you want to animate the material transparency setting. You might want to use a different format if FBX does not support that, at least for this specific effect, maybe detach to a different mesh, and export as collada file instead for that effect. I don't know if collada is supported in XNA, nor if would support material opacity animation. But is by far a more complete format, allowing a lot more stuff to be ported from a scenery.

I haven't really searched, but some stuff that pops, in case collada is not already supported by default (if not, they should add it) : link 1, link 2

Edit: Collada plugin for Max, info. You can try also with this other one.

  • \$\begingroup\$ 3dMax 2010 does support exporting to Collada format. I've analyzed exported xml and do not see anything that would indicate Opacity setting in animations is exported (only standard positions, rotations, scale for meshes). Is does surprises me that there is almost nothing on web covering this conceptually simple requirement... \$\endgroup\$
    – daniel
    Apr 21, 2011 at 14:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Game engines often do this by providing a custom plugin. I am not surprised, remember my mates coders having to implement stuff even for just environmental maps in other engines... I am not aware if is there a native max format loader for XNA, o r a hot link with the engine, something... \$\endgroup\$
    – S.gfx
    Apr 21, 2011 at 21:01

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